Humber’s fashion dean on the ethereal 2024 Met Gala looks

May 7, 2024 | Culture

A-list celebrities flooded the red carpet fixed with florals and wild colours in the late hours of May 6 at the 2024 Met Gala.

The Met Gala, held in The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and on the first Monday in May each year, serves as a charity event and fundraiser for the museum’s Costume Institute.

The theme this year was to celebrate the institute’s new exhibition “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion,” with a corresponding dress code titled “The Garden of Time,” after a short story published in 1962 by J.G. Ballard.

Humber College’s Associate Dean of Business Marketing, Fashion and Beauty, Bruce Sinclair, found that the theme was pointing out the museum’s resurfacing of archived items for the exhibit.

“These items that haven’t been seen in public for a long time,” Sinclair said. “The museum is bringing them back and essentially reawakening these items.”

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Music stars and actors, actresses alike showed up to the red carpet with their respective designers dressed in various fabrics, colours and accessories.

“I would describe it as ethereal, as there were sheer, semi-sheer dressing, appliques, and just a lot of craftsmanship,” Sinclair said. “I noticed this year over previous years that the gala seemed to return to more couture fashion as opposed to costume.”

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Anna Wintour, the editor-in-chief of Vogue Magazine since 1988, serves on the board of trustees for the gala and has also raised millions of dollars for the museum.

The museum’s costume gallery is now titled the Anna Wintour Costume Gallery after her years of involvement with the gala.

“The gala has full participation of the luxury fashion community, which is why it is the leading fashion event in the world,” Sinclair said. “It is where fashion, celebrities, and business all come together under one roof, which is what sets it apart from other events.”

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Alongside Wintour as the gala’s co-chairs for 2024 are Zendaya, Jennifer Lopez, Chris Hemsworth and Bad Bunny.

Sinclair says that the use of social media in addition to the use of celebrity power and leveraging follower accounts is what shapes the narrative surrounding celebrity fashion.

“I think that celebrities are used to push the fashion agenda, and I don’t mean that in a negative way,” he said. “This is a chance for designers to flex their creativity muscles and celebrities to secure business opportunities.”

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The gala also enforces a strict social media ban, which Sinclair believes is more to ensure the comfort of the attendees rather than push exclusivity.

“This is a networking event for celebrities and a lot of work and effort goes into ensuring a level of comfort so that they can actually enjoy it,” he said.

Individual tickets to the gala cost $75,000 and are invite-only, regardless of any donations that are made previously to the museum.

“It is expensive to attend, but I think it’s important for people to remember it is a fundraiser,” Sinclair said.

Roughly 400 to 600 attendees are allowed to the event every year, with the 2023 gala raising approximately $22 million in funds.

“It is a privilege to go and it is very meticulously managed,” he said. “To some degree it can be seen as elitist, but it also creates the magic of the event and why we pay attention to it.”